By Tony Mangia
MAYWEATHER LETS DOWN BOXING AND FANS
The dog days of summer are here. Pennant races in full swing. The X Games are on ESPN. A new season of Jersey Shore. No, not the show, I actually hang out down on the 15th Street Beach in Belmar. Just when I got over the drone of vuvuzellas, now comes "Wadda you lookin' at?" on the boardwalk and "Yo dude, you really got some air" on the television. All that said, what has really gets me riled is Floyd Mayweather Jr.
It has been a few days since Bob Arum announced the upcoming November 13 fight between his fighter, Manny Pacquiao and Antonio Margarito. A decent bout, but not the fight every boxing fan wanted and deserved. PacMan will be going for a record eighth world title in eight weight classes. Talk about the greatest pound for pound fighter in the world; Pacquiao just might someday win a title in every weight class.
Pacquiao (51-3, 38 KOs) will battle the shamed Margarito (38-6, 27 KOs) at 150 pounds for the vacant WBC light-middleweight belt at a still undisclosed location. Margarito may be unable to get a license in Las Vegas---because of last year's plaster of paris handwrap incident---so promoters are looking to a possible meeting in Monterrey, Mexico---Margarito's home turf.
Mayweather's camp has done nothing short of ducking Pacquiao. First, it was the drug testing clause then, the split of the purse, then time off. Now, like a bunch of schoolboys puffing out their chests on the playground---lots of finger-pointing and name calling---everyone involved is claiming its not their fault that the "fight of the century" will not happen this year---and probably never will appear in the annals of boxing.
HBO THROWS IN THE PROVERBIAL MONKEY WRENCH
HBO Sports President, Russ Greenburg said he got involved as a mediator between Golden Boy Promotions---which represent Mayweather---and Top Rank---which reps Pacquiao. Greenburgh cited the "unprecedented world-wide appeal" of a fight between Money and PacMan. The biggest Pay per View and payday in the history of boxing. Greenburg said he talked to both promoters at the beginning of May and couldn't get anyone to shake hands. Great...only thing is both war parties deny talking with HBO.
Golden Boy executive, Richard Schaefer said, "Floyd Mayweather is taking a vacation." He goes further by stressing, " Why would Floyd start talking about a future fight just days after fighting Shane Mosley?" Arum just flat out called HBO a liar. Now boys...
Its too bad boxing fans won't get to see the two best fighters in the world this fall. Senator Pacquaio has has his constituents in the Phillipines to look out for. Retirement wouldn't be a stretch. Rickey Hatton has been making noise about a rematch with Mayweather at Wembley Stadium in England. Hatton feels he was robbed by the referee, in his last defeat to Money, by denying him a chance to use his in-a-box clenching fighting style. Maybe a home town ref will help. Couldn't hurt as much as your last beat-down, Rickey. Could be a big payday for Mayweather without the threat of losing.
When Mayweather says, "Well, I'm not desperate," in reply to a meeting with Pacquaio, all fans hear is "I'm chicken." Mayweather has more excuses than Charlie Rangel. Nobody wants to hear about the big, bad taxman or claims that Money's brand is "being undefeated." Pacquaio had called out the self-centered welterweight and Mayweather didn't step into the ring...period. All of Mayweather's followers, who made him rich and famous, should realize that their champ isn't on vacation, he's in hiding.
Let's Do The Math
Funny how everyone calls the New Jersey Nets Jay-Z's team. Yup, he put up $1 million, but didn't the tall Russian pay $200 million for the team. How's that "Title in five years" plan working out so far, Mr. Prokhorov. You should feel at home, Newark is the Siberia of the NBA.
Memories of Linda Pepper in High School...Die Linda Die!
Read somewhere that Cleveland thought about retiring LeBron's number because he is the greatest player in Cav's history. Wow, that's like having your steady girlfriend leave you for your best friend in the middle of a party and you still keep a picture of her on your wall and...I don't want to talk about it...
Heard that West Virginia basketball coach Bob Huggins broke seven ribs in a slip in his hotel room. Seven ribs!!!!??? At least he wasn't driving.